Pa. casino fined for allowing underaged gambling, including an 11-year-old

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports

Pennsylvania on Wednesday hit Mount Airy Casino Resort in the Poconos with nearly $266,000 in fines and penalties for gaming-law violations, including three incidents of gambling by people under 21.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board fined the Monroe County casino $160,000 for three incidents in the last year in which people under the legal gambling age of 21 passed unchecked through security at the casino entrances and played slot machines, sometimes with the assistance of their parents. The casino’s policy is to demand identification of anyone who appears to be younger than 30.

“Even an 11-year-old doesn’t look like they’re 30. I don’t care if they’re five-eight, I don’t care if they’re six foot.”

Denise J. Smyler, Chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board

In two of the three incidents, casino employees came within 10 feet of the minors on the gaming floor and did not challenge them. In addition to an 11-year-old accompanied by her parents — her father inserted a $100 bill into a slot machine to stake her — another incident involved twin 13-year-old girls with their mother. A third incident involved an 18-year-old male.

“It sounds like the entire staff needs to be trained,” Denise J. Smyler, the board chair, said at a meeting Wednesday. She expressed the board’s “extreme disappointment” in the casino.

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